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Appleton II Victor; Tom Swift and His Giant Magnet

SKU: Appleton II Victor; AB112-260 $114.95
Original publisher's orange cloth covers and dust jacket. Front hinge is broken but binding is still sturdy. Consistent with this title and age pages are tanned. Minor wear to the edges of the dust jacket. A very sound volume of a difficult original series title. Tom Swift (in the 2nd series Tom Swift Jr.) is the name of the central character in five series of books first appearing in 1910 totaling over 100 volumes of American juvenile science fiction and adventure novels that emphasize science invention and technology. The character was created by Edward Stratemeyer the founder of the Stratemeyer Syndicate a book-packaging firm. His adventures have been written by a number of different ghostwriters over the years. Most of the books are published under the collective pseudonym Victor Appleton. The 33 volumes of the second series use the pseudonym Victor Appleton II. The character first appeared in 1910. New titles have been published as recently as 2007. Most of the various series focus on Tom trades inventions a number of which anticipated actual inventions. The character has been presented in different ways over the years. In general the books portray science and technology as wholly beneficial in their effects and the role of the inventor in society is treated as admirable and heroic. Translated into a number of languages the books have sold over 30 million copies worldwide. Tom Swift has also been the subject of a board game and a television show. Development of a feature film based on the series was announced in 2008. A number of prominent figures including Steve Wozniak and Isaac Asimov have cited ''Tom Swift'' as an inspiration. Several inventions including the taser have been directly inspired by the fictional inventions. In fact ''TASER'' is an acronym for ''Thomas A. Swift's Electric Rifle.'' Inventions: In his various incarnations Tom Swift usually in his teens is inventive and science-minded. ''Swift by name and swift by nature'' Tom is portrayed as a natural genius. In the earlier series he is said to have had little formal education. The character was originally modeled after such figures as Henry Ford Thomas Edison and aviation pioneer Glenn Curtiss. In most of the five series each book focuses on Tom's latest invention and its role either in solving a problem or mystery or in assisting Tom in feats of exploration or rescue. Often Tom must protect his new invention from villains ''intent on stealing Tom trades thunder or preventing his success'': Tom is always successful in the end. Many of Tom Swift's fictional inventions either mirrored or presaged actual technological developments. Tom Swift Among the Diamond Makers (1911) was based on Charles Parsons's attempts to synthesize diamonds using electric current. Tom Swift and His Photo Telephone was published in 1912: however the process for sending photographs by telephone was not developed until 1925. Tom Swift and His Wizard Camera (1912) features a portable movie camera not invented until 1923 and Tom Swift and His Electric Locomotive (1922) was published two years before the Central Railroad of New Jersey placed the first diesel electric locomotive into service. The house on wheels that Tom invents in 1929's Tom Swift and His House on Wheels pre-dated the first house trailer by a year and Tom Swift and His Diving Seacopter (1952) features a flying submarine similar to one planned by the United States Department of Defense four years later in 1956. Other inventions of Tom's have not come to pass such as the device for silencing airplane engines that he invents in Tom Swift and His Magnetic Silencer (1941). Authorship: The character of Tom Swift was conceived in 1910 by Edward Stratemeyer founder of the Stratemeyer Syndicate a book-packaging company. Stratemeyer invented the series to capitalize on the market for children's science adventure. The Syndicate's authors created the Tom Swift books by first preparing an outline with all the plot elements followed by drafting and editing the detailed manuscript. The books were published under the house name of Victor Appleton. Edward Stratemeyer and Howard Garis wrote most of the volumes in the original series: Stratemeyer's daughter Harriet Stratemeyer Adams wrote the last three volumes. The first Tom Swift series ended in 1941. In 1954 Harriet Adams created the Tom Swift Jr. series which was published under the name ''Victor Appleton II''. Most titles were outlined and plotted by Adams. The texts were written by various writers among them William Dougherty John Almquist Richard Sklar James Duncan Lawrence Tom Mulvey and Richard McKenna. The Tom Swift Jr. series ended in 1971. A third series was begun in 1981 and lasted until 1984. The rights to the Tom Swift character along with the Stratemeyer Syndicate were sold in 1984 to publishers Simon and Schuster. They hired New York City book packager Mega-Books to produce further series. Simon and Schuster produced two other Tom Swift series: one published from 1991 to 1993 and the Tom Swift Young Inventor series begun in 2006. Series: The longest-running series of books to feature Tom Swift is the first Tom Swift series which ran for 40 volumes. Tom Swift (technically Tom Swift Jr.) was also the name of the protagonist of the 33 volumes in the Tom Swift Jr. Adventures 11 volumes in the third Tom Swift series 13 volumes in the fourth and a half-dozen more in the most recent series Tom Swift Young Inventor for a total of 103 volumes over all series. In addition to publication in the United States Tom Swift books have been published extensively in England and translated into Norwegian French Icelandic and Finnish. Original series (1910 1941): In the original series Tom Swift lives in Shopton New York. He is the son of Barton Swift the founder of the Swift Construction Company. Tom's mother is deceased but the housekeeper Mrs. Baggert functions as a surrogate mother. Tom usually shares his adventures with close friend Ned Newton who eventually becomes the Swift Construction Company's financial manager. For most of the series Tom dates Mary Nestor. It has been suggested that his eventual marriage to Mary led to the series' demise as young boys found a married man harder to identify with than a young single one: however after the 1929 marriage the series continued for 12 more years and eight further volumes. Regularly appearing characters include Wakefield Damon an older man whose dialogue is characterized by frequent use of such expressions as ''Bless my brakeshoes!'' and ''Bless my vest buttons!'' The original Tom Swift has been claimed to represent the early 20th-century conception of inventors. Tom has no formal education past the high school level: according to critic Robert Von der Osten Tom's ability to invent is presented as ''somehow innate''. Tom is not a theorist but a tinkerer and later an experimenter who with his research team finds practical applications for others' research: Tom does not so much methodically develop and perfect inventions as find them by blind experimentation. Tom's inventions are not at first innovative. In the first two books of the series he fixes a motorcycle and a boat and in the third book he develops an airship but only with the help of a balloonist. Tom is also at times unsure of himself looking to his elders for help: as Von der Osten puts it ''the early Tom Swift is more dependent on his father and other adults at first and is much more hesitant in his actions. When his airship bangs into a tower Tom is uncharacteristically nonplussed and needs support.'' However as the series progresses Tom's inventions ''show an increasingly independent genius as he develops devices such as an electric rifle and a photo telephone further removed from the scientific norm''. Some of Tom's inventions are improvements of then-current technologies while other inventions were not in development at the time the books were published but have since been developed. Second series (1954 1971): In this series presented as an extension and continuation of the first the Tom Swift of the original series is now the CEO of Swift Enterprises a four-mile-square enclosed facility where inventions are conceived and manufactured. Tom's son Tom Swift Jr. is now the primary genius of the family. Stratemeyer Syndicate employee Andrew Svenson described the new series as based ''on scientific fact and probability whereas the old Toms were in the main adventure stories mixed with pseudo-science''. Three Ph.D.s in science were hired as consultants to the series to ensure scientific accuracy. The younger Tom does not tinker with motorcycles: his inventions and adventures extend from the center of the Earth (in Tom Swift and His Atomic Earth Blaster [1954]) to the bottom of the ocean (in Tom Swift and His Diving Seacopter [1956]) to the moon (in Tom Swift and the Race to Moon [1958]) and eventually the outer solar system (in Tom Swift and His Cosmotron Express [1970]). Later volumes in the series focused increasingly on the extraterrestrial ''space friends'' as they are called throughout the series. The beings appear as early as the first volume in the series Tom Swift and His Flying Lab (1954). The Tom Swift Jr. Adventures were less commercially successful than the first series selling 6 million copies in total compared with sales of 14 million copies during the first series. In contrast to the earlier series many of Tom Jr.'s inventions are designed to operate in space and his ''genius is unequivocally original as he constructs nuclear-powered flying labs establishes outposts in space or designs ways to sail in space on cosmic rays''. Unlike his father Tom Jr. is not just a tinkerer: he relies on scientific and mathematical theories and according to critic Robert Von der Osten ''science [in the books] is in fact understood to be a set of theories that are developed based on experimentation and scientific discussion. Rather than being opposed to technological advances such a theoretical understanding becomes essential to invention.'' Tom Swift Jr.'s Cold War-era adventures and inventions are often motivated by patriotism as Tom repeatedly defeats the evil agents of the fictional ''Kranjovia'' and ''Brungaria'' the latter a place that critic Francis Molson describes as ''a vaguely Eastern European country which is strongly opposed to the Swifts and the U. S. Hence the Swifts' opposition to and competition with the Brungarians is both personal and patriotic.'' Third series (1981 1984): The third Tom Swift series differs from the first two in that the setting is primarily outer space although Swift Enterprises (now located in New Mexico) is occasionally mentioned. Tom Swift explores the universe in the starship Exedra using a faster-than-light drive which he has reverse-engineered from an alien space probe. He is aided by Benjamin Franklin Walking Eagle a Native American who is Tom's co-pilot best friend and an expert computer technician and Anita a former rival of Tom's who now works with him as a technician and whose right leg has been rebuilt to contain a miniature computer. This series maintains only an occasional and loose connection to the continuity of the two previous series. Tom is called the son of ''the great Tom Swift'' and said to be ''already an important and active contributor to the family business the giant multimillion-dollar scientific-industrial complex known as Swift Enterprises''. However as critic Francis Molson points out it is not explained whether this Tom Swift is the grandson of the famous Tom Swift of the first series or still the Tom Swift Jr. of the second. The Tom Swift of this third series is less of an inventor than his predecessors and his inventions are rarely at the center of the plot. Still according to Molson ''Tom the inventor is not ignored. Perhaps the most impressive of his inventions and the one essential to the series as a whole is the robot he designs and builds Aristotle which becomes a winning and likeable character in its own right.'' The books are slower-paced than the Tom Swift Jr. adventures of the second series and include realistic colloquial dialogue. Each volume begins where the last volume ended and the technology is plausible and accurate. Fourth series (1991 1993): The fourth series starring Tom Swift (again a ''Jr.'') is set entirely on Earth (with occasional space trips to the Moon): Swift Enterprises is now located in California. In the first book The Black Dragon it's mentioned that Tom is the son of Tom Swift Sr. and Mary Nestor. The books deal with what Richard Pyle describes as ''modern and futuristic concepts'' and as in the third series feature an ethnically diverse cast of characters. Like the Tom Swift Jr. series the series portrays Tom as a scientist as well as an inventor whose inventions depend on a knowledge of theory. The series differs from previous versions of the character however in that Tom trades inventive genius is portrayed as problematic and sometimes dangerous. As Robert Von der Osten argues Tom's inventions in this series often have unexpected and negative repercussions. Among other inventions Tom develops a device to create a miniature black hole which casts him into an alternative universe: a device that trains muscles but also distorts the mind of the user: and a genetic process which combined with the effect of his black hole results in a terrifying devolution. Genius here begins to recapitulate earlier myths of the mad scientist whose technological and scientific ambitions are so out of harmony with nature and contemporary science that the results are usually unfortunate. The series features more violence than previous series: in The Negative Zone Tom blows up a motel room to escape the authorities. While thirteen books were authored only eleven were ever officially published. Fifth series (2006 2007): The fifth series ''Tom Swift Young Inventor'' returns Tom Swift to Shopton New York and Tom is the son of Tom Swift and Mary Nestor the names of characters in the original Tom Swift series. The series features inventions that are close to current technology ''rather than ultra-futuristic''. Other media: In his various incarnations Tom Swift trades adventures total over a hundred volumes that have been translated into numerous languages and published around the world. Parker Brothers produced a Tom Swift board game in 1966 and the character has appeared in one television show and is to appear in a feature film. In addition various Tom Swift radio shows television shows and films have been planned but were not released or in some cases produced. Film and television: As early as 1914 Edward Stratemeyer proposed making a Tom Swift film: no film however was made. A Tom Swift radio series was proposed in 1946. Two scripts were written but for unknown reasons the series was never produced. A television pilot for a series to be called The Adventures of Tom Swift was filmed in 1958 starring Gary Vinson. However legal problems prevented the pilot's distribution and it was never aired: no copies of the pilot are known to exist though the pilot script is available. Twentieth Century Fox planned a Tom Swift feature film in 1968 to be directed by Gene Kelly. A script was written and approved and filming was to have begun in 1969. However the project was canceled due to the poor reception of Dr. Doolittle and Star and a $500000 airship that had been built as a prop was sold to an amusement park. Yet another film was planned in 1974 but again was cancelled. Scripts were also written for a proposed television series involving both Tom Swift Jr. and his father the hero of the original book series. A Tom Swift media project finally came to fruition in 1983 when Willie Aames appeared as Tom Swift along with Lori Loughlin as Linda Craig in a television special ''The Tom Swift and Linda Craig Mystery Hour'' which aired on July 3. It failed to capture the spirit of Tom Swift and was a ratings failure. In 2007 digital studio Worldwide Biggies founded by Nickelodeon and Spike TV executive Albie Hecht acquired film rights to Tom Swift. Following the model of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius the company has announced plans to release a feature film and video game followed by a television series. According to Hecht the film will likely be produced in a combination of live action and CGI or motion capture: the character will be set in the present day with Tom Swift working for leading green company Swift Enterprises. Cultural impact: The Tom Swift books have been credited with laying the foundations for success of American science fiction and with establishing the edisonade (stories focusing on brilliant scientists and inventors) as a basic cultural myth. Tom Swift's adventures have been popular since the character trades inception in 1910: by 1914 150000 copies a year were being sold and in a 1929 study found the series to be second in popularity only to the Bible for boys in their early teens. Up to 2009 Tom Swift books have sold over 30 million copies worldwide. The series' writing style which was sometimes adverb-heavy suggested a name for a type of adverbial pun promulgated in the 1960s the ''Tom Swifties''. Some examples are: '''I lost my crutches' said Tom lamely'': and '''I'll take the prisoner downstairs' said Tom condescendingly.''[ Tom Swift's fictional inventions have directly inspired several actual inventions among them Lee Felsenstein's ''Tom Swift Terminal'' which ''drove the creation of an early personal computer known as the Sol'' and the taser. The name ''taser'' was originally ''TSER'' for ''Tom Swift Electric Rifle''. The invention was named after the central device in Tom Swift and His Electric Rifle (1911): according to inventor Jack Cover ''an 'A' was added because we got tired of answering the phone 'TSER.''' A number of scientists inventors and science fiction writers have also credited Tom Swift with inspiring them including Ray Kurzweil Robert A. Heinlein and Isaac Asimov. The Tom Swift Jr. adventures were Steve Wozniak's favorite reading as a boy and inspired him to become a scientist. According to Wozniak reading the Tom Swift books made him feel ''that engineers can save the world from all sorts of conflict and evil''. ''Tom Swift's Ultrasonic Cycloplane is developed to break the sound barrier and fly by a different principle from traditional aircraft: his jetmarine is developed to go deeper and faster and use an unusual type of propulsion. The novelty of the invention is the focus: while the invention may in the end accomplish some good that social end is usually far from the inventor's mind... [Tom's] inventions seem to be either for the military especially during World War I (giant cannon aerial warship war tank and air scout) or for the wealthy who buy the Swift Pigeon Special as a private plane all contributing to the bottom line for Swift Enterprises ... invention is an avocation a diversion made possible by wealth and the already existing advanced technology.'' Victor Appleton was a house pseudonym used by the Stratemeyer Syndicate most famous for being associated with the Tom Swift series of books. The following series have been published under the Victor Appleton name: Tom Swift 1910 1941 Motion Picture Chums 1913 1916 Moving Picture Boys 1913 1922 Movie Boys 1926 1927 Don Sturdy 1925-1935 Tom Swift Jr. 1954 1971 (technically ''Victor Appleton II'') Tom Swift (Third Series) 1981 1984 Tom Swift (Fourth Series) 1991 1993 Tom Swift (Terror on the Moons of Jupiter) Victor Appleton is credited as being the author of the Don Sturdy series which include: trade:Don Sturdy in the Tombs of Gold&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1925 trade:Don Sturdy Across the North Pole&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1925 trade:Don Sturdy With the Big Snake Hunters&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1925 trade:Don Sturdy On the Desert of Mystery&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1925 trade:Don Sturdy Among the Gorillas&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1927 trade:Don Sturdy Captured by Head Hunters&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1928 trade:Don Sturdy In Lion Land&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1929 trade:Don Sturdy On the Ocean Bottom&trade:&trade: illustrated by Walter S. Rogers 1931 trade:Don Sturdy in the Temples of Fear&trade:&trade: illustrated by Nat Falk 1932 trade:Don Sturdy Lost in Glacier Bay&trade:&trade: illustrated by Nat Falk 1933 trade:Don Sturdy Trapped in the Flaming Wilderness&trade:&trade: illustrated by Nat Falk 1934 Ghostwriters of these books included Howard Roger Garis John W. Duffield W. Bert Foster Debra Doyle with James D. Macdonald F. Gwynplaine MacIntyre Robert E. Vardeman Thomas M. Mitchell and James Duncan Lawrence